chess board and pieces

Mental Benefits of Chess

As you might expect, chess expands your mental abilities by challenging you in various ways. You may be surprised by how regularly playing chess can improve your thinking processes.

Improved Memory

It makes sense that chess players have a terrific memory. To recognize and recall seemingly endless patterns of play, chess players need to rely on their memory. Of the many benefits of playing chess, improving memory skills is one of the best reasons to learn the game.

Better Planning Skills

Expert chess players are thinking two, three or even several plays ahead of where they are. This ability to plan is a useful skill in other facets of life that require you to think ahead and know what's around the bend, not just what is right in front of you at the moment. Planning–not guesswork–makes for winning chess play.

man playing chess

Delayed Dementia

It's believed that engaging in complex mental tasks like playing chess can help stave off the onset of dementia. One of the benefits of chess is that it activates portions of the brain responsible for calculation, critical thinking, creativity and memory–and may thus help delay the effects of dementia as you get older.


Some mental health professionals use chess as a way for their patients to become more self-aware. By engaging in a chess game with the patient, a counselor can show the patient why they deal with challenges the way they do. Another of the benefits of playing chess is that it promotes a sense of calm because it forces a person to concentrate and focus on one task. Learning how to harness this focus and resulting calm helps diffuse stress in everyday activities.

Health Benefits of Chess

Chess is more than a game for the mind–there are other health benefits of chess that you'll enjoy when you set out to achieve "checkmate." Chess promotes social skills and emotional growth in many ways.

Heightened Empathy

World-class chess players learn to read their opponent. What are they thinking? What will their next move be? By putting yourself in the other player's shoes, you're able to anticipate what their line of attack will be and thwart them before they can follow through with their strategy. This heightened empathy can help when dealing with others in social situations.

Getting In the Zone

When an experienced chess player becomes totally immersed in their game, they may experience something called the "flow state." It's the feeling of deep satisfaction you get from being in top form when performing a challenging task. This is one of the benefits of chess shared by artists, performers and athletes, who have described the sensation as being a state when you're totally in the zone and unaware of anything but the task at hand.

picture of the human brain

Increased Creative Skills

Coming up with creative solutions is part of the game of chess. This ability can carry over to other aspects of a chess player's life, helping them overcome obstacles and devise fixes for problems they encounter.

Help With ADHD

Young children who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may benefit by regularly playing chess. As part of a special treatment program, the strategies and concentration chess requires can help those who suffer from ADHD.

Chess Benefits Kids, Too

The same health benefits of chess that adults enjoy can also apply to children. Chess helps kids develop problem-solving skills, build relationships with their peers and enhance their overall cognitive abilities. Chess is also a great way to teach kids that even when they lose, they learn from their mistakes, and improve their skills for next time.

MegaChess Amplifies the Benefits of Playing Chess

In community centers, commercial settings and backyards across the country, people are discovering the benefits of playing chess–on a large scale. The giant chess sets from MegaChess are available in different sizes and configurations to fit your area of play, indoors or out.

You can go traditional or trick out your chess set with modern versions of classic game pieces. Not sure which one is right for you? Take our MegaChess Giant Chess Set Quiz and find out. Or, get started with our Giant Chess Set Buying Guide. You'll also find helpful information on our website, like video assembly instructions for your chess set. The choice is all yours–along with the health and mental benefits of chess. Shop for your MegaChess giant chess set and chess set accessories today!

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